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Old 05-27-2010, 07:35 AM
43,012 posts, read 83,590,205 times
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Originally Posted by lifelongMOgal View Post
I've started searching for a new lab pup through retriever news and thi is what I am finding to be very true. However, these breeders also offer guarantees on their dogs, have great testimonials, and are professionals in every way.
Purebred lab pups from a quality breeder are very hard to find. It took us two years. That was 14 years ago too.

We couldn't find a lab puppy anywhere. Ultimately, my girlfriend's sister had her female with champion lines studded by a male owned by a very reputable breeder. Since she had the litter for us, we had second pick of the litter. The stud breeder had first pick.

We lucked out and got ours for $350 because we were friends of the family and that was the price she quoted before she started the process. The rest of his litter mates went for $2,000 and up to $6,500.

She owns a huge produce farm. Her brother had given her this champion female, but she never intended on being a breeder. She only bred this dog for us. As a result, my dog's litter was the only litter her female ever had.

He's 14 now. Let me tell you, it was totally worth the wait. He was a great hunting dog, and he's still a fantastic family member. I wish he could live another 14 years!
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Old 05-27-2010, 10:59 AM
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,257 posts, read 8,843,669 times
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As someone else said not all puppies in a litter are of show quality and a true reputable breeder will be honest about this. If you are looking for pet quality tell the breeders that and yes most will make you sign a contract saying the dog will be neutered or spayed within a certain amount of time as with it being only pet quality they do not want you out there breeding it.

My Dazzle, a Silken Windhound is a rare breed so you pretty much have to get one via a breeder so I went a Silken Windhound Event,show/races and met a lot a bunch of breeders and dogs. When I decided to get one I contacted a breeder I had met at that.The puppy she had listed as available she had decided to keep so she put me in touch with another breeder who actually had the half brothers and sisters to her own pups and I filled out a questionnaire and told her I was looking for a pet quality dog as I am not into showing dogs. She had a few from the litter that were pet quality and sent me photos so I looked at them and many E-mails passed between us. I then let her know which my first pick was then the 2nd and told her I was looking for an out going dog that could do agility and she felt that my # 1 choice would be the best one for me. She lives in Washington I live in So Calif. The breeders of Silkens are a very protective group and care very much for the breed and having seen the half siblings to her pups and spoken with the other breeder I was confident that I would get a good dog. So she drove my # 1 choice and one other pup down to San Francisco where we met at the other breeders home and the rest is history.

Dazzle is everything I could have dreamed of. Last year he and I went to a Silken event and I met his sister and a brother and his mother and I tell you I picked right as those two siblings were not as outgoing or confident as he is. He was pet quality because he had a retained testicle. This is the first time I have ever used a breeder as my other dogs have all been recuses as have all the dogs I grew up with, but when I learned about Silkens and saw these beautiful elegant dogs I knew how well one would fit into my life at this time. I did feel a bit guilty getting a puppy from a breeder instead of just adopting another rescue dog but now that I have had him over a year I am glad I made the choice as I said he is everything I could have dreamed of and he makes me laugh all the time silly cuddly goof ball that he is. So just be careful and make sure you tell them you are interested in Pet quality if all you do want is a pet.
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Old 05-27-2010, 06:00 PM
7,197 posts, read 7,847,189 times
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Since I have pure-bred dogs from a reputable breeder and am active in the dog conformation world (but am not a breeder), I am always asked what questions to ask to determine if someone is a good breeder. I always say it really doesn't matter what you ask them (bad breeders and millers will lie), but rely on the questions they ask you. A good breeder will always give you the 3rd degree and make you fill out applications and questionnaires. Why? Because they love their dogs, and only want them to go to good homes, and live with families that will care for them as well as the breeder will care for them. They want to make sure they are placing the dog in a home that is a correct fit.

Relying on the AKC Breeder Referral List is not the best route. Any breeder who is registered with AKC (and that only requires filling out a form and paying a fee) can be on the list. To find the best breeders, go to the breeder referral list of the national paret club for the breed. The AKC has this link for all of the breeds on their website. This list is usually (can't say for all breeds) scrutinized much more thouroughly by the members of the parent club. These are the breeders and owners of the dogs.

Why do reputable breeders tend to lean to people who want show dogs? Because they are proud of the line of dogs they are breeding and want to continue doing that. Most breeders will only breed dogs that have their championship title. In order to get that, someone needs to show them. Breeders are always looking for owners willing to make that commitment. Most litters have puppies that are not "show quality". These are perfectly normal, healthy dogs who have a sight "flaw" in appearance (teeth not perfectly aligned, etc). These pet quality dogs are what you are looking for, although the wait may be longer for these.

Telling potential owners that it may take a long time before a puppy is available is true. But it also weeds out the people who are not serious. If they see you are stilll very interested, some breeders will move you to the top of the list.
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